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Thread: phonics

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    Hi there,
    How can I put it in English to explain to my students (grade 6) what phonics is and why they should phonics?
    I need simple words to explain to them.


  2. Soup's Avatar
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    Re: phonics

    Kindergarten teachers tell their students that every letter has a name and a sound. For example, the letter <a> is called [e:], that's its name, and it has the sounds [ae] in apple and [a] in father, for example. Phonics helps with reading.

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    Re: phonics

    You could ask them what do they think when they hear a foreigner with a strong accent.
    Tell them that they are in the same case if they try to communicate with an English speaker using "local" allophones.
    In Spanish we have only five vowel sounds (phonemes), but English has its owns (15-20, I don't remember).
    I'm sorry, I think I'm mixing up things. Try this links:

    International Phonetic Alphabet - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    • Join Date: May 2008
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    Re: phonics

    I live in the United States. English is my primary language. I have also studied Latin and French. I have a bachelor's degree with two majors, English Literature and Secondary Education. For the last four years, I have been tutoring in an elementary school. I have worked with gifted, average, and below-average students. Much of the work I have done these past four years with the students with below-average skills in English has been based on phonics.

    Phonics used to be systematically taught in schools in the United States. Some time ago, this system was dropped, and our overall national reading scores dropped, too, and have not recovered. Now some schools are going back to teaching phonics.

    Some kids can pick up the sounds of the letters themselves logically or intuitively, but others cannot. So, teaching phonics systematically is the best way to guarantee a solid foundation in reading and writing English.

    If you want to teach the sounds of the English language to students, you can find on the web a deck of cards called the "Orton" deck. (The exact title may vary slightly from this.) This card deck includes the letters and groups of letters commonly found in English words and assigns a word or phrase to each letter or group of letters. Using the cards, students learn the possible sounds of each letter and group of letters. For example, the word for the letter "L" is "lollipop." The card includes a picture of a lollipop. You can make your own deck for these sounds and print it out on cardstock. To do this, you need to have a good clip-art collection, a printer that can print cardstock, and a good working knowledge of how to make tables that include pictures and words. After you make the deck and cut it out, it's a good idea to have it laminated so that it will last.

    In my opinion, an excellent book series called "Primary Phonics" is the best series for systematically teaching a young child how to read in English. This set plus workbooks costs about $150. and can be bought from a U. S. publisher called EPS, as I remember. EPS can be located on the web. Most of this phonics series was written and published for the first time more than 50 years ago. The series includes a number of short books with sweet black-and-white illustrations and text based on word families (-at, cat, rat, mat; -in, pin, tin, win). The children with whom I have worked using these books enjoyed reading them. (I do not make anything on the sale of these books, by the way.)

    If you can break up teaching reading in English into a series of steps (these phonics books do that), you can make Word Fish decks based on certain sounds. Fish is a card game, and kids enjoy playing it. So you can add a series of Fish decks to the books and workbooks, or, I believe, you can use the decks by themselves to teach English. My first rule with teaching is that it must be fun, or I don't want to do it. And these decks help make it fun.

    Here is what I would tell the students about learning phonics:

    The root of the word "phonics" is "phon." The definition of "phon" is "sound." Any language that is "phonetic" is a language based on sound. English is a phonetic language. So, to read the English language, you have to know the letters of the alphabet (a, b, c, d, etc.) The letters of the alphabet make up all words in the English language. Each of the letters in the alphabet and certain groups of letters that commonly appear together make certain sounds. In order to read English well, a person needs to know the sounds that each letter and each group of letters that commonly appear together (such as ea, ui, sh, and ph) can make. Studying and learning these sounds is the body of work called "phonics."

    • Join Date: May 2008
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    Re: phonics


    Pete, here is information about the Orton card deck. It's available through Yes Phonics on the web and probably other sources, too. I made my own deck to use at school. The pictures on the cards are not here. You can find some of those, too, given on certain websites. Best of luck with this!

    Orton Phonogram Flash Cards List & Examples

    The Orton Phonograms are the "phonics codes" word building tools all readers & writers of English need to reach their highest potential. For beginners to advanced learners, K-College, Gifted, Sp. Education, Self-Learning & EFL/ESL

    A "Phonogram" is either one letter or a set combination of letters which represent one or more single "voiced" sounds in a given word.

    The 72 phonograms are the 26 alphabet letters and 46 multi-letters consisting of 2-4 letters. Each Phonogram has 1-6 single sounds.

    The 72 Phonograms are:

    a, b, c, d, e, f, g, h, i, j, k, l, m, n, o, p, qu, r, s, t, u, v, w, x, y, z, sh, ee, th, ay, ai, ow, ou, aw, au, ew, ui, oy, oi, oo, ch, ng, ea, ar, ck, ed, or, wh, oa, oe, er, ir, ur, wor, ear, our, ey, ei, eigh, ie, igh, kn, gn, wr, ph, dge, tch, ti, si, ci, ough, gu

    The 72 Phonograms with Easy-to-Learn Keyword Captions

    For fast accurate reading it is vital to know the phonogram’s sounds in the order of use frequency. The phonogram illustration with its “keyword” caption depicts the sound sequence of the phonogram. This is an easy-to-learn memory device, which is easily and quickly learned, never to be forgotten. Without this knowledge reading and spelling are very difficult.

    Single-letter phonograms and keyword captions that say 1 single sound:

    b (bumblebee); d (daddy’s dragon); f (funny face); h (hug); j (jumping jack); k (king);

    l (lollipop); m (mammoth); n (noon); p (puppies); r (road runner); t (teeter-totter);

    v (valentine); w (wiggle worm); x (x-ray a fox); z (zebra at the zoo).

    Single-letter phonograms and keyword captions that say 2 to 4 single sounds:

    a (have a ball); c (cat in the city); e (help me); g (goat and giraffe); i (it’s a giant radio);

    o (ox over? love to!); s (Susie); u (ducks use output); y (your gypsy can fly quickly).

    Multi-letter phonograms and keyword captions that say 1 single sound:

    qu (queen); ee (peek); sh (she fishes for friendship); ay (play sailboat);
    ai (play sailboat); aw (auto law); au (auto law); oy (noisy boy); oi (noisy boy);

    ng (sing a long song); ar (car); ck (prick a pickle); or (form a sword);

    wh (whisper to a whale); oa (toad on the boat); oe (tiptoe); eigh (eight freight cars);

    igh (night light); kn (knight’s knockout); gn (gnat sign); wr (don’t write wrong);
    dge (hodge-podge); tch (pitcher); ti (nation); ci (special social); gu (guilty guy).
    These 6 phonograms all say /er/: er, ir, ur, wor, ear, our and share the caption:

    (her first nurse works early on her journey).

    Multi-letter phonograms and keyword captions that say 2 to 6 single sounds:

    th (three of them); ow (cowboy show); ou (sound, soul, youth, trouble);
    ew (brew a few); ui (fruit juice); oo (foolish crook at the door); ch (/ch/-/k/-/sh/);

    ea (eating bread is great); ed (spotted starred, striped); ey (they have the honey);
    ei (their leisure); ie (piece of pie); si (mansion excursion);
    ough (dough, through, tough, trough, sought, bough).
    Last edited by Amma; 02-Jun-2008 at 16:28. Reason: clarification

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